The German cousin of the Peugeot e-208 revamps its look and improves its performance. Well made and fun to drive, this Corsa dares to display Tesla prices. Even with a bonus, it’s not enough!
At 4.06 m long, the Opel Corsa is a model perfectly suited to narrow roads and the purchasing power of the middle classes of the European market. It is therefore with this category of cars that the European market could become massively electrified. A strategy that Renault had already anticipated in 2012 with the launch of the Zoé. However, the prices of these two models have always been much too high. A positioning aimed at not cannibalizing thermal models that are less expensive to manufacture and therefore much more profitable. But this strategy wasted a lot of time by European manufacturers who today find themselves technically overtaken by the new Chinese manufacturers and the American brand Tesla.
A little more fishing
The new Opel Corsa electric tries as best it can to wear its new black grille high. The restyling of the front bumper, the new colors and the logo modifications try to brighten up the atmosphere. The arrival of the 156 hp synchronous motor associated with a new battery (NMC type) of 51 kWh (i.e. 48 useful kWh) does not eclipse the 136 hp version which remains in the catalog. The 260 Nm of torque are delivered to the front wheels shod with good Michelin Primacy4 tires on our test version. The suspensions and steering assistance benefit from different settings from those of the Peugeot e-208.
Opel Corsa-e: LLD from €169 per month for the electric versatile
More intuitive than the Peugeot e-208
Rather well manufactured, the Corsa electric stands out for the ergonomics of its controls, which are more intuitive than in the Peugeot e-208 and the presence of a standard-sized steering wheel which does not hide the speedometer. The Corsa electric can also count on numerous storage spaces at the front and a huge glove box. Only the habitability turns out to be very limited. Legroom in the rear seats is tight and the central tunnel penalizes the middle seat. Too bad, because the middle backrest, without a folding armrest, is rather comfortable. The 267-liter trunk is enough for everyday use, but is a little short when planning vacation trips with two children.
Very average energy efficiency
The Corsa electric offers good directional stability and a certain driving pleasure. Despite firmer upholstery and suspensions than on the Peugeot, comfort remains respectable. Even if regenerative braking does not allow you to go all the way to a stop (even in mode B), smooth driving in town is essential. The performance is nothing sparkling (0-100 km/h in 8.1 s for 150 km/h top speed) but is more than sufficient. The soundproofing of air noise and rolling noise seemed very honorable to us despite the absence of laminated glazing. The advantage of having small wheels and a narrow, low car.
On the motorway at 130 km/h, consumption can reach 24 kWh/100 km and reduce the range to less than 200 km. However, charging at 100 kW allows 80% of energy to be recovered in 30 minutes at fast direct current (DC) terminals. Acceptable for those who only make a few long trips during vacation. For the majority of daily journeys, it will be possible to go down to 15 kWh/100 km in Eco mode and exceed 300 km. This is still far from the 402 km promised according to WLTP standards.
How can you justify a price of €36,700 for a Corsa? Let’s not talk about the numerous options like fog lights at €250, panoramic roof at €500, LED headlights with active regulator at €900, 17-inch rims at €400, 11 kW AC charger at €400 or the Infotainment pack at €1,300. In short, our properly equipped test model exceeded €41,000 with options. For this price, you can treat yourself to an MG4 Luxury with the large 77 kWh battery (€39,490) or the 435 hp XPower version (€40,490). The Chinese compact is more spacious, more efficient and better equipped than the small German. Even without bonuses in 2024, it will remain more interesting than a Corsa at €36,000. Some will say that the builders of the Middle Kingdom are selling at a loss by taking advantage of the financial graces of the Party.
An Opel Corsa-e bought, socks offered
What about the American manufacturer Tesla, whose 280 hp Model 3 with two huge trunks, 513 km of WLTP autonomy, a high-end Hi-Fi system and an ultra-powerful on-board computer is accessible at less than 42,990 €? It is really time for the Stellantis group to offer its electric vehicles at prices in line with the purchasing power of the French without relying solely on economic protectionism measures.
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